Sandy River & Rangeley Lakes Railroad and Predecessors, Volume 4

Sandy River & Rangeley Lakes Railroad and Predecessors, Volume 4, the latest book from Jerry DeVos should be available around Sept 5, 2015.  The retail price is $60.00 including shipping is US. Canada including shipping is US $83.00. All others including the UK and Australia is US $95.00.

Volume 4 completes the presentation of the equipment:

SR and SR&RL built equipment, “Snowplows” built by Joseph M. Whittier, Unknown Builders and Miscellaneous builders

Rosters: Eustis, F&M, P&R, SR, SR&RL

The format, page count, etc. is identical to previous volumes in this series.

Previous books in this series have been very detailed with sufficient pictures.  Most of the pictures used have appeared in other books.  Jerry stands behind his books.  Book 2 or 3 was had poor quality printing, all images were dark and he got them all reprinted at no charge to his readers.

If your interested in book, contact Jerry direct via email:  jdevos99 @ AOL.com

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TNT in the Iron Age

As I may have mentioned five ex-Eastern Loggers (or in-active…) have joined forces as an informal group nicknamed TNT.  We’ve had a wonderful success rate, missing no more than 3 weeks in 9 months.   Most weeks, we work on Paul Miklos N-scale B&O layout.  We are trying to get it ready for the Op till you drop weekend of SWOOPS. But the group also meets to work on Don’s switching layout and has helped on my railroad room ceiling.  A few weeks ago we visited Phil’s place and ventured into the Iron Age.  Phil is an electrons guy with many interests.  Model railroading is just one of them.  But for the past few years he has been assembling his Iron Forge and now has a blacksmith shop in the shed.  TNT took a visit to learn and do.

Phil works the fire while Paul turns the fan that fuels the fire.  It was interesting to learn how coal is piled near the fire to convert it to coke, and the coke is what goes into the fire.  All fumes are drafted up through the hood and duct.

Phil works the fire while Paul turns the fan that fuels the fire. It was interesting to learn how coal is piled near the fire to convert it to coke, and the coke is what goes into the fire. All fumes are drafted up through the hood and duct.

Phil shows us how it is done, how to "move metal".

Phil shows us how it is done, how to “move metal”.

Paul is now is now showing his guns in moving metal.  Might I say that Paul has shall we say, more finesse than Phil.

Paul is now is now showing his guns in moving metal. Might I say that Paul has shall we say, more finesse than Phil.

An overall view of the shed/setup.  Don and Chris are watching Phil at work.

An overall view of the shed/setup. Don and Chris are watching Phil at work.

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2015 Sn3 Symposium – Wrapup

I often go solo to events across the country.  My job is managing a team of 17, and then there is family.  I enjoy them both, but some times it fun to just do my thing.  Also going solo is an opportunity, an opportunity to me new people.  1998 National Narrow Gauge Convention, meet Pete Smith and the Gang from St. Louis and repeated that again at Sn3 Symposium in Pasadena.  2011 National NMRA convention, meet Rene Gourley.  2012 National Convention in Hickory, met John Rogers.  The 2015 Sn3 Symposium, met Steve Cox of Cascade Rail Supply.  Ah yes, had breakfast with Pete Smith and St. Louis gang and a few others too!

My second day of layout tours was a lot of fun.  Steve and I took in a number of layouts and talked about Sn3, kids, layout planning, etc…  At the end, we grabbed dinner before heading home for the evening’s clinics and such.

Here are a few photos from those layouts…

The Engine Terminal of Bob Christopherson's Pinoche and Western.

The Engine Terminal of Bob Christopherson’s Pioche and Western.  EBT Lee Rainey muzzle got into the picture.

Bob Christopherson’s Sn3 Pioche and Western was very nicely done.  This free-lanced railroad fit in 1/2 of a two-car garage.  It was one of the smaller layouts I saw, but it was one of the most complete and consistent layouts.  It told a single story.  Bob’s layout impressed Steve, as it showed what could be done with Sn3 in a smaller space.

The P&W's primary purpose is to haul minerals from mine to crusher (or smelter or some such).  The detail on teh layout is quite nice.

The P&W’s primary purpose is to haul minerals from mine to crusher (or smelter or some such). The detail on teh layout is quite nice.

Bob has a nice town scene on one side of the backdrop.

Bob has a nice town scene on one side of the backdrop.

One of the mining scenes on the P&W

One of the mining scenes on the P&W

Thirsty?

Thirsty?

Bob uses this crew signup board.  It is made out of styrene.  It's nice to be able to make use of the evergreen I-beams to form slides for name plates.

Bob uses this crew signup board. It is made out of styrene. It’s nice to be able to make use of the evergreen I-beams to form slides for name plates.

Dave Woodrell has a wonderful RGS layout.  It was my second time to see this layout (1998).  Again, his detail is very nice and the layout seems to run very well.  One thing I learned this time is that his layout has a provision for continuous run by going around an adjacent room.

Ridgeway on Dave Woodrell's RGS

Ridgeway on Dave Woodrell’s RGS

Here's a shot of the layout looking toward Ophir.  That's Steve taking in the scenery

Here’s a shot of the layout looking toward Ophir. That’s Steve taking in the scenery.  Dave hosts operating session on the layout and must operate with a fast clock above.

Caboose 0404 on one of the trestles above Ophir.

Caboose 0404 on one of the trestles above Ophir.

Max Maginness was kind enough to open his Sn42 layout.  Inspired by New Zealand prototypes of his home country, this layout was a pleasant surprise.  Again, a smaller three town layout, but it was plenty interesting.  The locomotives and rolling stock were a contrast to the US prototypes had been seeing all day.

The depot at Rewanui on Max Maginness' Sn42 New Zeland Layout

The depot at Rewanui on Max Maginness’ Sn42 New Zealand Layout

How about a narrow gauge 4-6-2?

How about a narrow gauge 4-6-2?

A mine scene on Max's layout.

A mine scene on Max’s layout.

The last layout we saw was Russ Segner’s Coal Creek Lumber Co.  This free-lanced Sn3 layout rambles about a lofted family room.

The sawmill if fit into an alcove in the layout room.  This full-size S-scale model dominates one end side of the layout.

The sawmill if fit into an alcove in the layout room. This full-size S-scale model dominates one end side of the layout.

The switchback branch goes up to the mining district.  Cars are exchanged in this yard.

The switchback branch goes up to the mining district. Cars are exchanged in this yard.

That's Russ, behind one of his wonderful tipples.

That’s Russ, behind one of his wonderful tipples.

Thanks to all who put on the 2015 Sn3 Symposium.  Another great event.  The Sn3 Symposium’s are great modeling railroading events.  I’d suggest them to anyone who can attend.

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2015 Sn3 Symposium – Paul Scoles

The Symposium was the last time for modelers to view the late Paul Scoles model railroad.  He had passed a few months prior and his widow was kind enough to keep the layout open for one last show case of the layout.  Quite a gesture to keep the layout and host all of us in the home. The local modelers ran a few trains and talked to all of us who came to visit each day.

The free-lanced Sn3 layout represents a 1895-1900 railroad running inland from the Northern California coast.  It has been well published in many model railroad magazines including NG&SLG, RMC, and MR and MRP (probably more).  Additionally Paul created and sold DVD about his scenery techniques and operations on the railroad.

For posterity sake here are my best photos from my 2nd and last visit to the model railroad.  The photos are order from east (the desert) to the west (Or maybe it’s from South to North). Most of the photos can be clicked on to see the high level of detail that Paul obtained.

This map was on Paul's wall.  It shows the railroad as originally envisioned in one room (before expansion to Silverado).  In what follows, I describe the railroad from East (or maybe South) to West (North at Klamath)

This map was on Paul’s wall. It shows the railroad as originally envisioned in one room (before expansion to Silverado). In what follows, I describe the railroad from East (or maybe South) to West (North at Klamath)

The east staging yard was above Paul's workbench.

Del Norte, the east staging yard was above Paul’s workbench.  The connection though the backdrop was for the reversing loop connection back into Silverado for continuous run.

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Going east, Silverado was the first modeled location on the railroad

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Silverado was a substantial town with multistory buildings

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Looking west through Silverado

This trackplan sat above Paul's workbench.  Use it to follow your way on this tour.

This trackplan sat above Paul’s workbench. Use it to follow your way on this tour.  (Click on the image to see full size)

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Silverado grew into the aisle

As the layout evolved, Paul was known to add bump outs when he wanted just one more industry or structure.  Luckily he planned his layout with ample aisle space for such expansions.

As the layout evolved, Paul was known to add bump outs when he wanted just one more industry or structure. Luckily he planned his layout with ample aisle space for such expansions.

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A head on view of Silverado.

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The first bridge crossing in the Diablo River canyon

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A trestle over a tributary of the Diablo River. At this point, the river canyon was behind the railroad.

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Paul added the lime (or some mineral) plant after the railroad was built. It was located before getting to Big Trees.

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A better view of the plant. On his operations DVD Paul described how he ran special trains to this plant. They were run as extra’s and were optional to the operating scheme. The freight cars were in captive service, so could be run or not. The trains looked like a great way to see the railroad and experience a running an extra on a TT&TO layout.

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The Big Trees area of the layout was quite impressive.  I think there was a NG&SLG article on building the large trees.

The Big Trees area of the layout was quite impressive. I think there was a NG&SLG article on building the large trees.

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The Big Trees depot area

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A train emerges from the tunnel between Rio Dell and Big Trees. The tunnel got trains around the stairs and between the two rooms that housed the layout.

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Engine #11 is waiting to depart Rio Dell for Big Trees

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The Rio Dell depot

An overview of Rio Dell

An overview of Rio Dell

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A water level shot of the Rio Dell tank and bridge.

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The Bridge at Rio Dell

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Humboldt Landing

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A shot of the car ferry. This too was an article for NG&SLG.

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Humboldt Landing from the West.

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Trains passed from Humboldt to Pelican Bay by passing under the arched road bridge in the background. Here we see the Pelican Bay engine house and turntable.

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The servicing area of the Pelican Bay engine terminal

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This down low view of the servicing area really shows off Paul’s modeling talents.

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Pelican Bay yard and depot in the background of this shot. My memory is that in 1998 Paul and mockups for a large city behind the depot. He must have changed his mind, I’m glad he did as the hills make the railroad seem much more remote.

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A few buildings were still mocked up for the West end of Pelican Bay.

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Along the coast toward Fort Nash

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A dry wash and more tunnels as the railroad fought it’s way along the coast.

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The train led by engine #11 emerges at Fort Nash.

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The west end of Fort Nash

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Out of the tunnel and onto Camp Riley. Paul added bridges everywhere and had inlets and creeks. The constant crossing of changing terrain added interest and realism to the railroad. The railroad itself was flat, no grades. But the terrain was not.

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Above Camp Riley sat this mountain farm

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Camp Riley is in site

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Camp Riley’s main reason for existence was the mine in the background (Distorted by the camera). Another wonderful bridge with a combination of wood and metal so right for the time and the span being crossed.

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Arriving at the Klamath Falls wharf. What a great catch of solder fish on the dock. Paul used a combination of paint and natural wood look on his structures.

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Another view of the wharf.

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A water view shot

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The leads to the wharf. Trains enter Klamath via the tunnel at right.

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An over view of Klamath. The main line proceeded around to the left, infront of Fred and into staging under the town. The track at right was a cut-off connection to form a reversing loop for continuous run.

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Klamath Sawmill and town on the hill.

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An end view of the saw mill

 

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The main street to the town of Klamath.  Trains passed under the bridge and entered staging yard was  at lower right, after

It seems fitting to end this tour at Paul's workbench.  The dispatching magnetic board mounted above on the fascia of the east staging yard

It seems fitting to end this tour at Paul’s workbench. The dispatching magnetic board mounted above on the fascia of the east staging yard

It’s my understanding that the layout has now come down and been auctioned off in some way shape or form.  I know one person who was very appreciative to acquire two of his locomotives and some rolling stock to get started on his own freelanced railroad!

 

 

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2015 Sn3 Symposium – Roger Nulton’s S-scale Monon

The Sn3 Symposium hosted operating sessions.  Each participant had the opportunity to sign up and operate on one layout.  This is a great opportunity and a hard choice for us guests.  I was torn between operating on Dale Kruetzer’s Sn3 RGS and Roger Nulton’s S-scale Monon.  The “pull” to operate on S-scale was just too great and Roger’s layout is one of the best S-scale layouts.

Quite honestly, the only significant S-scale I’d ever scene is S-gauge/Hi-Rail or Flyer layouts at shows.  I guess there was some S-scale at the NMRA National X2011 show.  So, I really wanted to see the best S-scale had to offer and could it be competitive to HO or Sn3/Sn2 to my actual eyes (not in a mag or blog).  I’ll just say, that I was blown away by S-scale as Roger has done it….It look great, and operated great.  Take a look at the photos and make your own impression.

An RS3 on Roger's layout

An RS3 on Roger’s layout

Roger giving the pre-session instructions.  The layout currently operates on a sequence and uses CC&WB.  He is standing behind the Shops and staging is behind him.

Roger giving the pre-session instructions. The layout currently operates on a sequence and uses CC&WB. He is standing behind the Shops and staging is behind him.

Roger provides a "J" channel to slip CC&WB's in while doing switching along the route.  It worked quite nicely.

Roger provides a “J” channel to slip CC&WB’s in while doing switching along the route. It worked quite nicely.  When cards are not present the viewer is not distracted by the channel.

Roger employed 2-man crews.  I was the conductor on a local, and here is the engineer.  We used hand signals and he said he enjoyed.

Roger employed 2-man crews. I was the conductor on a local, and here is the engineer. I my suggestion, we used hand signals.  I think using hand signals is more appropriate for the time, as radios were not yet used.  My engineer said he enjoyed it or maybe he was just being kind.

At Gosport, IN we encountered another crew switching and had to wait to get through

At Gosport, IN we encountered another crew switching and had to wait to get through

Railfanning our caboose as it crosses a bridge

Railfanning our caboose as it crosses a bridge

Road crossing.  Glad the buss stopped safely back from the crossing.  My engineer blew the whistle in time.  No S-scale students killed today!

Road crossing. Glad the buss stopped safely back from the crossing. My engineer blew the whistle in time. No S-scale students killed today!

Newcastle is a hot spot on Roger's layout

Newcastle is a hot spot on Roger’s layout

An SW1 in the yard

An SW1 in the yard

Interchange is a significant element of Roger's operating scheme.  He has plans to have NYC and PRR jobs

Interchange is a significant element of Roger’s operating scheme. He has plans to have NYC and PRR jobs

The size of this structure blew me away.  It is big.  It made me think that Maine 2-foot structures are a bit smaller, closer to HO.  Why, the industries and towns are smaller so the structures that serve them are smaller.  Anyone modeling S-scale will have to deal with the larger size.  O-scale has to be worse.

The size of this structure blew me away. It is big. It made me think that Maine 2-foot structures are a bit smaller, closer to HO. Why, the industries and towns are smaller so the structures that serve them are smaller. Anyone modeling S-scale will have to deal with the larger size. O-scale has to be worse.

One of the branch staging yards is under the layout.  I did not notice it until I was about to leave.  It is effective and I like the blue backdrop.    My hand is there for "scale" so you can see how small the space is.

One of the branch staging yards is under the layout. I did not notice it until I was about to leave. It is effective and I like the blue backdrop. My hand is there for “scale” so you can see how small the space is.

This 0-6-0 sitting on a display shelf caught my attention as it is a Rex model (similar to an old HO Mantua Kit).  Roger did a nice job finishing it, but I'd guess it does not operate as well as the SHS SW1 so became a display item.

This 0-6-0 sitting on a display shelf caught my attention as it is a Rex model (similar to an old HO Mantua Kit). Roger did a nice job finishing it, but I’d guess it does not operate as well as the SHS SW1 so became a display item.

The quarry branch is in the garage.

The quarry branch is in the garage.

The quarry branch is up high, requiring steps to operate.  A PRR interchange yard is on the right.  We did not operate either this day

The quarry branch is up high, requiring steps to operate. A PRR interchange yard is on the right. We did not operate either this day

In the end, Roger has done a wonderful job. His layout may not be equal to the best HO has to offer, but it would be well above average. S-scale is not quite as “ready-made” as HO. But the size/mass of the trains is fun. They operate well, are easy to couple/uncouple. S-scale is worth consideration for those willing to compromise and or willing to build a bit on their own.

If you’d like more information about S-scale consider the NASG website and/or the S-scale SIG website or S-scale Resource.

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2015 Sn3 Symposium – Dale Kruetzer

This year the Sn3 Symposium was in Seattle, home of many great layouts….I love seeing and operating great layouts so I just had to go.  Additionally, I gave a clinic, Introduction to TT&TO operations.  Here is the first post about those that I did make it too.

The Sn3 RGS layout of Dale Kruetzer is gorgeous.  How about those backdrops?

The Sn3 RGS layout of Dale Kruetzer is gorgeous. How about those backdrops?

4-6-0 #25 on Dale's layout

4-6-0 #25 on Dale’s layout

A train passes under the trestle

A train passes under the trestle

Sawmill along Dale's RGS

Sawmill along Dale’s RGS

The summit is over Dale's workbench.

The summit is over Dale’s workbench.

Clearly Dale is a fine modeler.  Sorry, not an RGS guy, so not sure what location this is

Clearly Dale is a fine modeler. Sorry, not an RGS guy, so not sure what location this is

Telephones in the layout room for OSing to the dispatcher.  Dale operates with TT&TO.  Actually, he attended my clinic back in Hickory.  But I doubt I was much of an influence in what he has done.  Instead I'd think Paul Scoles and others had a much stronger influence than me.

Telephones in the layout room for OSing to the dispatcher. Dale operates with TT&TO. Actually, he attended my clinic back in Hickory. But I doubt I was much of an influence in what he has done. Instead I’d think Paul Scoles and others had a much stronger influence than me.

Dale's dispatcher desk is located in the adjacent room.  It is as well done as the rest of the railroad.

Dale’s dispatcher desk is located in the adjacent room. It is as well done as the rest of the railroad.

Dale's railroad is a continuous run through the staging yard which is in this little room.

Dale’s railroad is a continuous run through the staging yard which is in this little room.

The layout's scenery is about 50% complete.  Dale make use of mockups to see how the scenes will look.

The layout’s scenery is about 50% complete. Dale make use of mockups to see how the scenes will look.

The mainline and some spurs are on grade.  When switching, a red flag can be inserted into a tube between the ties to hold that cars in place by the coupler.

The mainline and some spurs are on grade. When switching, a red flag can be inserted into a tube between the ties to hold that cars in place by the coupler.

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“U” that’s the plan

As I mention in “Friends and a Goal” I’ve reunited with several in-active Eastern Loggers to work on layouts and to have a setup at the October NMRA Division Show.  For 2015, we plan to take my Sn2 Free-mo modules.

We settled on a simple “U” shape configuration as shown in the image below.  To that we can add the full length turntable or possibly complete the loop as show with simple sections.

"U" shape setup proposal for the NMRA show.  Has option to add train length turntable or complete the loop as shown

“U” shape setup proposal for the NMRA show. Has option to add train length turntable or complete the loop as shown

I still have the duck under from my first Sn2 layout.  It 90 degree curve that is 8″ wide and 4″ think.  It could be used in combination with 1-2 additional sections to complete the loop.  The road crossing and cut in the image below is that duck under.

The Main St. crossing in Strong.  In the background, a train is approaching from Phillips.  This was the site of a head-on accident where #8 tipped over on the embankment.  As a result of the wreck, the ball signal was moved to the other side of the Strong station for better visibility.

The Main St. crossing in Strong. In the background, a train is approaching from Phillips. This was the site of a head-on accident where #8 tipped over on the embankment. As a result of the wreck, the ball signal was moved to the other side of the Strong station for better visibility.

The duck under is two 2″ thick pieces of foam. with plywood ends and masonite sides.  Quite sturdy, very light and easy to handle.  Had I considered this technique, it might have been manageable to make the reversing loops with the Junction module.  That’s not possible now, as I’ve sold the module and I hope it prospers.  The “U” plan is nice as it is a manageable size, fitting in 1/3 of my basement room.

Speaking of my basement, TNT (that is what we call our group) worked on my ceiling again last night.  We’re nearly finished.  Thanks guys!  I promised that the next time we meet at my house we’ll set the modules up and try running them.  A fun meeting to assess the situation and for them to learn more about 2-Foot, SR&RL, and S-scale.

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